The leader of Gambia’s People’s Progressive Party (PPP’S) Omar Amadou Jallow has been paying tribute to his fallen colleague and longtime friend Landing Jallow Sonko. Mr. Jallow, in a somber tribute message aired on Freedom Radio Gambia, explained how Landing Jallow Sonko ventured into politics after many years of teaching in the classroom, as a qualified teacher. Mr. Sonko, he said, has taught in various schools across the country, before becoming a politician. He noted that Landing was not only his colleague, but a close friend and confidant.
According to Mr. Jallow, he worked under Mr. Sonko as a former Youth leader under the defunct PPP regime. He said Landing was among the strong pillars of the PPP administration adding that Mr. Sonko was very inspirational towards his political career despite his first failed attempt to secure public office.
OJ also talked about both him and the late Landing Jallow Sonko of being victims of dictator Yahya Jammeh’s misrule. OJ said he lost two of homes to the junta, as Jammeh forcefully and illegally seized two of his hard earned properties. He added that Landing Jallow Sonko too suffered the same fate. He recalled how Jammeh agents evicted Landing’s wife and kids from their Cape-point home in the early days of the junta rule.
Landing’s Capepoint home was later transformed as an office by Jammeh, he said, adding that Mr. Sonko’s family were thrown into the streets by some trigger happy rogue soldiers under Jammeh’s command. Mr. Sonko and his family were compelled to relocate, he added.
The late Landing Jallow Sonko’s son Saikou Sonko, who now lives in the United Kingdom, told this medium that he was from school, when he found his pregnant mom Amie Samba and his sisters being ejected from their property. His mom told him that they received an order from the state to vacate their home. Saikou had some years left to complete his High School education at the Marina International. Marina is one of the most expensive schools in The Gambia.
According to Saikou, his uncle Sidi Sanneh, a former official of the African Development Bank (ADB) came to their aid. Sanneh was able to house them at his newly built house in Bakau, he said.
Despite his Dad’s political trials and tribulations with the state, Saikou said his mom was not only supportive to his late Dad, but to the family as well. They were able to complete their education unhindered.
For his part, OJ said the late Landing Jallow Sonko lived a dignified and honourable life prior to his unfortunate demise. He noted that Mr. Sonko was a devoted Muslim, who has never abandoned his family, neighbors, colleagues, PPP party and country. Landing has represented his country adequately, he further noted.
“Not long ago, when Yahya Ceesay, tasked him to deputize him on issues relating to the party. His demise is a big loss to the country. We will certainly miss him. May God reserve place for him in heaven,” OJ said.
Regarding the driver, who claimed Landing’s life during a recent automobile accident he suffered while trying to cross the road after coming from his early morning prayers, OJ called on the police to bring the driver to book. Mr. Jallow is the least statisfied with the slow pace of the police investigations. He noted that cases of such nature should be given the urgency it deserves in the spirit of justice and fair play.